May 16, 2012

Memories live on with passing of special friends

It's been only a few weeks since I said goodbye to two special women in my life. One was a "country" lady and the other a "city" lady.

The "country" lady was Mary "Elizabeth" Ellsworth Mount, 93, who died April 27. She was my vacation Bible school teacher at the Presbyterian Church in Westville when I was 5. Mrs. Mount helped me memorize scripture, was proud of my stick-figure Bible characters and taught me Bible stories on the flannel board.

(For the younger set, the flannel board was just that, a large square board covered with flannel that was used as a sticky backdrop for flannel people and animals to tell a Bible story. No PowerPoint back then.)

Her signature on several of my VBS certificates says I passed my classes from primary to intermediate. In junior high, her husband, Warren, taught me in released time classes. (He said I didn't do very well and produced the old test papers to prove it.)

I thought the Mounts would just be part of my happy childhood memories until 10 years ago when the Westville Historical Organization formed and we met again as members. It's hard to explain my happiness reconnecting with them as an adult. After several talks about genealogy, we discovered we are related by the McFaddin-Armstrong-McGibbon families. How wonderful!

They insisted I call them Betty and Warren, but that was very difficult because I was taught to call my elders "Mr." and "Mrs." Eventually, I became comfortable with our new relationship and loved every minute we spent together.

Betty's legacy, besides mother, grandmother and great-grandmother, includes teaching at the same one-room schoolhouse she attended as a kid, leading 4-H for more than 60 years at her great-grandfather's house next door, sharing local history and being married to Warren for nearly 67 years.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • ken_wibecan.jpg Another day in the life

    Each morning I rise from bed, slowly, as is my habit, and sit quietly on the bed contemplating the day that looms before me, writes columnist Ken Wibecan.

    August 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • PPR small talk mug 081714 Corner store is no more

    Columnist Gordie Little offers a reminder of the little grocery stores of days gone by.

    August 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • PPR skin deep mug 081714 High-end products worth the splurge

    Regardless of the price, writes columnist Felicia Krieg, she would buy the core group of her makeup products over and over again.

    August 17, 2014 2 Photos

  • paul_grasso.jpg Tax code needs overhaul

    Corporations may be criticized for exploiting loopholes, but it is the complex tax system that is at fault, according to columnist Paul Grasso.

    August 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Hagar_mug1.jpg Ideas about soil health changing

    New techniques like no-til and cover crops can make soil healthier than conventional tillage, according to columnist Peter Hagar.

    August 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • colin_read.jpg Economy may have changed forever

    The Great Recession has reordered the workforce in a way that makes it unlikely it will ever be the same, according to columnist Colin Read.

    August 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Terry_Mattingly.jpg The dark side of fun funerals

    Something strange happened in American culture in the past decade or two: People started planning fun funerals, writes religion columnist Terry Mattingly.

    August 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • PPR fit bits mug Developing power key to success

    While strength is important, the ability to generate power is required for many basic activities in life, writes columnist Ted Santaniello.

    August 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • PPR you had to ask mug 081014 Time to reel in youth sports parents

    Do not scream at a child that he's a loser, at least not in a language he understands, columnist Steve Ouellette writes.

    August 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • colin_read.jpg Treating corporations like people

    Problems arise in many areas when businesses take on the attributes of individuals as mandated by the court, according to columnist Colin Read.

    August 10, 2014 1 Photo

Peter Black: Canadian Dispatch

Lois Clermont, Editor

Cornell Cooperative Extension

Richard Gast: Cornell Ag Extension

Bob Grady

Guest Columns

Peter Hagar: Cornell Ag Connection

Health Advice
Ray Johnson: Climate Science
Gordie Little: Small Talk
Terry Mattingly: On Religion

Steve Ouellette: You Had To Ask

Colin Read: Everybody's Business

Pinch of Time